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Mysuru begins grand 10-day Dussehra festival with prayer at Chamundeshwari temple

The famed 10-day Dussehra festival began on Wednesday with pomp and piety in Karnataka's cultural capital Mysuru, about 150 km from Bengaluru.

"The festival began on a grand note with a prayer at the Chamundeshwari temple, followed by its inauguration at the royal Amba Vilas Palace," a district official told IANS.

Infosys Foundation Chairperson Sudha Murthy inaugurated the 408th year of the festival by worshipping the deity amid chanting of Vedic hymns and rendering of devotional music.

Sudha's husband and Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy, Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, his ministers, officials and hundreds of others were present at the temple and later at the palace.

"I am blessed to inaugurate the Dussehra festival. It is an honour and privilege," said Sudha.

As the festival has historical relevance dating back to the 16th century when the Wodeyar kings used to celebrate it, Sudha said the state government should include it in school curriculum to inspire the younger generations.

"Dussehra festival is different from Ganesha Utsav and Diwali festival as it has a long history of over 400 years," she said.

A replica of the deity was taken in a procession to the royal palace from the temple atop the Chamundi hill on the outskirts of Mysuru.

(With inputs from agencies.)

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